Germany 1946 by Martin Niemöller:
First they came for the communists, and I did not speak out—because I was not a communist;
Then they came for the trade unionists, and I did not speak out—because I was not a trade unionist;
Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out—because I was not a Jew;
Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak out for me*
Martin was a German anti-Nazi Lutheran pastor, he dared speak up when the Nazi rose to power and started getting rid of their target groups one after the other.
This post is not to discuss Nazis or Jews or any of the sort, it is to about the notion of speaking up for what you think is right or wrong and having the courage to voice your convictions even if you know that your voice is a drop in the sea and that it won’t make a big difference but deep down you think that maybe -just maybe your voice will make a difference to someone if at least it would make a difference to you. I wonder why politicians and public figures rarely speak up their thoughts and convictions, is it that they don’t have any? Is it that their own ethics and convictions match what is going on around them (I highly doubt it)? Or is it that they have too much to lose if they speak up, hence the personal conviction weighs more towards self-indulgence of material goods?
Will there be anyone left to speak out for you?
* original text in German:
Als die Nazis die Kommunisten holten, habe ich geschwiegen;
ich war ja kein Kommunist.
Als sie die Sozialdemokraten einsperrten, habe ich geschwiegen;
ich war ja kein Sozialdemokrat.
Als sie die Gewerkschafter holten, habe ich nicht protestiert;
ich war ja kein Gewerkschafter.
Als sie die Juden holten, habe ich geschwiegen;
ich war ja kein Jude.
Als sie mich holten, gab es keinen mehr,
der protestieren konnte.